London Burger Challenge: The Devastator

My hunt for Europe’s best burger continues to the Red Dog Saloon in Hoxton – a neighborhood in northeast London – for the Devastator Challenge!! Sitting down with a few friends, the American style BBQ place felt like it was plucked up from the good old U S of A and dropped on Hoxton Square. With animal skulls and horns decorating the walls, Brooklyn Lager in the fridge and a basement rec room most men aspire toward and the vibe says, “Let’s eat some meat!” On the menu tonight was one thing, The Devastator!! A delicious combination of chuck-steak, American cheese, applewood smoked bacon and a load of hickory-smoked pulled pork. This sounds like a walk in the park, until you hear the portions: (Vegetarians, looks away. Carnivores book your travel to London.)

  • 3 burgers
  • 6 slices of American cheese
  • 6 slices of applewood smoked bacon
  • 200 grams (7 oz – nearly half a pound!) of hickory-smoked pulled pork
  • PLUS – one milkshake
  • PLUS – one basket of fries
  • PLUS – one pile of coleslaw
  • Total calories: 3,777

While the list above has clearly lost me several vegetarian friends and readers, it’s a fantastic combination. Calories aside, the only downside for this challenge is that you have to eat everything in under 10 minutes! Since I knew that wasn’t going to happen, I played it cool like a first-time marathon runner and focused on just finishing (the burger).

So here’s how the night went down:

Primed and ready, David and I did some Challenge prep by stretching and loosening our belts a notch. Next time, we’ll wear sweat pants or loose fitting athletic shorts.

From the ground up the Devastator was built in layers. Bun, burger, cheese, bacon, pulled-pork, burger, cheese, bacon, pulled-pork, burger, cheese, bacon, pulled-pork and bun.Man vs. Food host Adam Richman talks a lot about the mental wall you hit when just can’t eat any more. After destroying the 11 of the 14 layers (plus my coleslaw), I hit “the wall”, hard.

But after another 10 minutes, Mission Accomplished (kind of)!

The bottom bun had been soaking in grease and coleslaw juice for more than 20 minutes and if there was something that would take me over the edge to Toilet-Town, it would be that bun. Time to completion: 20+ minutes.

Time to completion: 20+ minutes.

Time I felt like a burger was going to burst out of my stomach like a scene from the movie Alien: 2 hours.

With this practice run under our belts, David is determined to beat the 10:00 minute challenge and get his name on the wall of fame. Me, I’ll come to support David but the other burgers and ribs looked just as good.

If you were here, would you take on the Devastator?



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